Wan wai kru khru teacher commemorative day Pahuyuth featured

Wan Wai Kru – The Teacher Memorial Day (June 23)

Every year on June 23rd Pahuyuth free warriors celebrate the so-called Teachers’ Memorial Day (Wan Wai Kru). In this blog post we explain the background of this ritual.

Background

Thanking a living teacher is easy. You just go to him or her and say “Thank you!”.

But how do you thank all those who have already passed away, are not available or are not personally known?

In memory of all those known and unknown Pahuyuth warriors and Pahuyuth teachers of the past who have helped to develop and pass on the Pahuyuth knowledge, Pahuyuth people celebrate the so-called Teacher Memorial Day (Wan Wai Kru) once a year (on June 23).

Wai Kru on the occasion of the Teachers' Memorial Day

Teacher Memorial Day is a non-religious ritual – a voluntary, personal gesture with which Pahuyuth Free-Warriors can thank their teachers in their personal way, or not.

The origins of the Teacher Memorial Day

In the distant past, when the fighting knowledge was still used to defend the country and freedom, many scholars of Pahuyuth have bloodily lost their lives.

Without these teachers, the mediation and passing on to future generations would not have been possible. Therefore, this day is dedicated to the teachers of history, who, through the sacrifice of their lives, ensured that the Pahuyuth could be handed down to this day.

The typical teachers of PAHUYUTH are:

  1. Kru Srietreirat – The Creator Teacher (Nature, Parents, …)
  2. Kru Schid – The Close Teacher (living teacher)
  3. Kru Nueg – The Grateful Teacher (Intuition)
  4. Kru Tagt – The Spontaneous Teacher (Tipster)
  5. Kru Lag Jam – The Thieve Teacher (indirectly acquired knowledge)
  6. Kru Pieh – The Spirit Teacher (inspiration or dreamed knowledge)

The role of the teacher in the traditional martial art

A teacher in the understanding of Pahuyuth is never a “master” or “ruler” over his disciples, but always only a simple but experienced warrior and person who shares his knowledge willingly and always with a recommendatory character.

The role of the teacher is similar to that of a ferryman who has already crossed a raging stream himself and is now helping others with their crossing.

The Teacher Memorial Day in modern times

Teacher Memorial Day is a non-religious and non-commercial ritual — a voluntary, personal gesture that Pahuyuth Free-Warriors can use to thank their teachers in their personal way, or not.

There is therefore basically no obligation to do or not do anything on a teacher’s day. Joint teacher memorial days are also never organized by a teacher, but only by students. If a Pahuyuth teacher is present on this day, he or she will also only participate in this ceremony as a student.

A teacher’s day organized by a teacher or an institution with a fixed schedule and entertainment would contradict the traditional ideal and self-image of a teacher (see above). The same applies, by the way, to any form of worship or glorification of living teachers that does not exist in Pahuyuth.

Pahuyuth arose from the rebellion against oppression and slavery and the pursuit of peace and freedom. In the understanding of Pahuyuth, therefore, all people are equal and no one has the right to place themselves above others. For this reason, the traditional Wai Kru (teacher greeting) is never performed in honor of a living teacher.

The traditional ritual

Pahuyuth disciples often gather on this day (June 23) and, if necessary, hold a certain ritual or ceremony to symbolically thank and commemorate the teachers. If June 23 falls on a regular training day, there will be no training on that day.

The traditional ritual is composed of various things, so on this day one dresses in bright colors, if possible in white. You try not to curse and not have bad thoughts that day and try to do something in some way that helps someone.

Three things are brought to the ceremony at the memorial site: one to three incense sticks, a white candle, self-picked plants, which should be pointed if possible. Under no circumstances you buy these plants but pick them yourself on the way to the ceremony – simple grasses, as they grow on the roadside, are completely sufficient.

Pahuyuth teacher's day teacher day teacher memorial day wai ceremony e1546197279238

Silent Remembrance – Simplicity and modesty characterize the Teacher Memorial Day.

At the memorial site

After arrival, the first thing to do is to lay down the grass or plants, the incense sticks and the candle in a designated place. After that, each Free-Warrior will remember his teachers in his own way. Commonly used is the execution of the teacher’s greeting (Wai Kru). Only after that you greet the others present.

Wai greeting
Pahuyuth warriors thank their teachers
Wan Wai Kru / Wan Wai Khru
Pahuyuth Wai Kru / Waih Khru

Channelings

Usually, the teacher of the school, who does not participate in the ceremony as a teacher on this day, but also as a student, will tell something about the origin and tradition of that day. Under certain circumstances, it may happen that he or another person present spontaneously acts as a medium and provides the students present with additional information or advice.

Channeling from the Teacher Memorial Day 2017

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Channeling from the Teacher Memorial Day 2018

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Channeling from the Teacher Memorial Day 2019

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Channeling from the Teacher Memorial Day 2020

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Ending of the ceremony

Afterwards, the ceremony ends with a relaxed get-together. For students attending a teacher’s memorial day for the first time, this is usually an extraordinary and interesting experience that brings them closer to the cultural aspects of Pahuyuth.

Pahuyuth wai kru khru teacher greet statue smol

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